Peace & Justice

This is the blog of the Commission on Peace and Justice for the Roman Catholic Diocese of Albany, New York.

Thursday, November 17, 2011

Are you brave enough to be a nun?

Two recent news articles highlight the dangers that nuns face around the world. The first article reports on a nun fighting for human rights amid the drug war in Mexico:
Even in a career full of threats and harassment, the day someone deposited four cats at her office door, all with their throats slit, stands out for Consuelo Morales.

"They were telling us to be quiet or we'd be next," she says.

That was 14 years ago, and she is still anything but quiet.

The 63-year-old Roman Catholic nun is one of Mexico's most indefatigable and effective defenders of human rights. As the country staggers into a sixth year of drug war violence, Sister Consuelo (as her colleagues call her) has more work than ever.

Mothers whose sons were last seen being hauled away by police seek her counsel. She leads marches and confronts state governors, prosecutors, detectives. She escorts victims past soldiers posted at government buildings and helps them file the kinds of complaints the authorities would rather not see: about the disappeared, the slain, the tortured, allegedly at the hands of police and soldiers.

The second article dealt with the murder of a nun in India:
Church leaders in Kerala have expressed shock and outrage over the killing yesterday of tribal rights campaigner Sister Valsa John.

The 53-year-old nun from the Sisters of Charity of Jesus and Mary was hacked to death at her home in the remote Pakur district of the east Indian state of Jharkhand.
. . .
Sr. John’s brother, M. J. Baby said he had warned her not to return to Jharkhand when she came home for a holiday at the end of August.

“I told her not to go back after she told me about threats she had received,” he said.

The family believe the nun was killed by people connected to a mining company she was campaigning against.

Offering his praise to the dead nun, Kerala regional Latin Catholic Council president, Archbishop Maria Calist Soosapakiam said: “With her exemplary life and courage to fight evil, Sr John has shown us that we need to rededicate our lives for our faith and work for the poor.”
We recommend that you read them both, and pray for both of these brave women.